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Cheltenham hero set to bid to land Gold Cup double at Punchestown next month

Al Boum Photo chases more glory at the festival next month.

AL BOUM PHOTO, the horse that finally landed a first Gold Cup win at Cheltenham for Willie Mullins last month, will have plenty competition when he attempts to complete the double by winning at this year’s Punchestown Festival.

Paul Townend onboard Al Boum Photo celebrates winning Paul Townend celebrates after Al Boum Photo's victory at the Cheltenham Gold Cup. Source: Dan Sheridan/INPHO

The entries for the Grade 1 races on the opening two days of the 2019 Festival have been revealed with Al Boum Photo set to chase a Gold Cup double on Wednesday 1 May, on the back of March’s triumph with Paul Townend on board.

In total Willie Mullins has eight entries in the field of 22 for the Coral Gold Cup with Kemboy aiming to follow up on last week’s Aintree victory in the Betway Bowl Chase while Bellshill, Footpad, Killultagh Vic, Pairofbrowneyes, Pleasant Company and Yorkhill complete the trainer’s entries.

Randox Health Grand National Festival 2019 - Grand National Thursday - Aintree Racecourse Kemboy celebrates after last week's victory in Aintree. Source: Paul Harding

Henry De Bromhead’s Monalee, fourth in the Ryanair Chase at Cheltenham, us also in the frame along with a trio of English-trained contenders in Aso, Definitly Red and Sizing Granite.

The Gold Cup is the feature race on the second day while that day will also see the Grade 1 Irish Daily Mirror Novice Hurdle with Minella Indo, the Albert Bartlett Novices’ Hurdle winner at Cheltenham, involved along with Commander of Fleet and Allaho, who finished second and third respectively in that race.

The opening day at Punchestown on Tuesday 30 April will see the BoyleSports Champion Steeplechase take centre stage. Min, a victor at Aintree last Friday, has been entered for Willie Mullins with Footpad, Great Field, Douvan and Un De Sceaux other contenders.

Randox Health Grand National Festival 2019 - Ladies Day - Aintree Racecourse Min ridden by Ruby Walsh won the JLT Chase last week. Source: Paul Harding

Supreme Novices’ Hurdle winner Klassical Dream has been entered into Tuesday’s Herald Champion Novice Hurdle where Nicky Henderson’s Champagne Platinum will be a potential opponent.

And there are three Cheltenham victors entered into the Dooley Insurance Champion Novice Steeplechase on the Tuesday.

A Plus Tard won the Close Brothers Novices’ Handicap Chase for Rachael Blackmore, Defi Du Seuil was the victor in the JLT Novices’ Chase and Any Second Now claimed victory in the Kim Muir Challenge Cup.

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About the author:

Fintan O'Toole

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